A big part of getting ready for the Walt Disney World Marathon is submitting a Proof of Time for corral placement. Right now we are counting down the days until times need to be submitted by. We have 17 weeks until the marathon but only 3 weeks are left to submit proof of time. So like so many others I have carefully gone over what races are nearby and picked one to use as my proof of time. I chose Run Holden Beach, a 13.1 on Holden Beach, NC. I hope it will be good enough.
I have been training for months now. I have put in the hard work in the heat and humidity. I am still a proud member of the turtle club and the back of the pack, I easily maintain 11-12 minute miles with the occasional 10-minute mile here and there. I ran a total of 125 miles for the month of September. There is no pixie dust here, just hard work. If anything maybe a bit much running because I developed a bit of plantar fasciitis in the past month. Then again, after discovering that I blew out the side of my Altra’s I fully blame my shoes that should have still been good. They only had 300 miles on them, for a runner that is barely anything. I went on to rotating my other running shoes while debating what shoe to buy and hoping my foot got better. I had a half marathon coming up that I needed to not only PR at but I wanted that 2:45 time. It finally was a week before the half marathon my foot was not 100% better and I still needed a new shoe. Going against my gut I bought a pair of Altra’s on Amazon and tapered. Tapering was hard, mentally. During my week off I told myself I would do a couple easy runs in the new shoes when they got here and not let myself run otherwise. Not running made me crazy. Even crazier was the 2 day shipping on my shoes. The shoes I ordered on Sunday arrived on Friday, late in the afternoon. I didn’t get a training run in them before Run Holden Beach half the next morning. I will say though my feet felt good. I was thinking I had beaten plantar fascitis. Going to bed early Friday night I was thinking as long as the weather isn’t horribly humid and hot I may do ok.
Waking up in the wee hours of Saturday morning I was ready, nervous but ready. I arrived at the beach shortly before packet pick up was to begin, just over an hour before the race start. I picked up my packet, said hi to some people I knew and went back to my car and waited. I ate my rice cake and decided to write down my mile split times that I needed to hit during the half. Before I knew it, it was time to line up. I grabbed my vest and moseyed over to the start area. I was ready as I was going to be.
Then we were off. I had in my head I was going to maintain 1:1 intervals. Now this is my disclaimer, 1:1 intervals are typically run one minute, walk one minute or some other variation. I don’t do my intervals that way so when I’m asked what intervals are you doing I never know how to answer. My intervals are distance based. Then there is the I will do what my body tells me thing and there are so many things that factor into that, the biggest one is probably my asthma. Both when my asthma is good or bad the intervals go out the door. Starting out the half, I was doing pretty good. I was even staying with the 2:30 pacer and to my surprise, the bridge was not that bad.
If I had to pick a favorite moment during the half it would have been going back over the bridge to the island. The view was beautiful.
What it says that my favorite moment about the half is before the 2nd mile, I’ll leave that for you to decide.
Once we were back on the island the rest of the run was pretty flat. For the first 6 miles of the half I was doing ok. My pace was ok and I actually had a buffer of a few minutes. I did use my inhaler at mile 4, with the humidity I was expecting to need it. It has been an issue during training. I continued on, playing leap frog with a guy since our intervals were opposite of each other for several miles. After the turn around I never saw him again as I left him behind. By the middle of mile 7 I had some cramping in my back, I knew it was dehydration setting in despite sipping in Nuun and water. I kept going and upped how much I was drinking. By mile 8 I was using my inhaler again. It was miserable out, just hot and humid and my pace had slowed down even more. I wasn’t the only person out there struggling. Many people were getting hosed down it was so hot. I thought to myself how i’d love to do that but never stopped. I had a time goal that was slipping away. I eventually was pushed off the road and onto the sidewalk. No, not by race directors or police but the vehicles we were sharing the road with. Outside of the bridge, the half was on a shared road and for the majority of the race the cars were no problem. It was once I hit the 10 or so mile mark that the vehicles started to get worse and by mile 11. I was being honked at and being on the shoulder of the road wasn’t good enough. Just after mile 11 I broke down and moved to the sidewalk and slowed down some more as I weaved around people I saw my 2:45 time drift away as I was now walking 13 minute miles. I was determined but I wasn’t confident that I would make my time goal. In the end,I missed my time goal. I was close at 2:47:15. I was over by 2 minutes and 15 seconds. My half time has been submitted so now it will be wait and see what happens.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON RUN HOLDEN BEACH
My motto has been every run may not be good but there is good in every run. I learn from every run. Here is what I learned:
Hill workouts are important. I credit all the hill’s I’ve run during training for making the overpass a breeze to run.
There is a huge difference between Nuun and Nuun Active. I learned this months ago after buying some Triberry Nuun. I used almost the whole tube before discovering that fact. The reason why I had issues with dehydration during the run is I made the wrong type. I discovered this when I got home.
When you cramp after a run, say as you are driving home and you stop at a gas station, go in and cramp so hard it makes you sit on the gas station floor (yes, true story) Plain Potato chips will work wonders with some Powerade. Your body will thank you for the salt and potassium. I needed more than my post race pickles and Powerade after this half.
I am not a fan of sharing the road with traffic during a half. I know it slowed me down too.
I kept hearing people talk about how the course wasn’t marked accurately or was off. I came in at 13.17miles. That additional distance is from weaving.
Walking across the street, putting my feet in the cool water, and sitting on the beach after the race was a huge plus.
Plantar fasciitis is evil. I was hobbling for 2 days after the half. My foot is still far from 100% and I have yet to run since the half.
There it is my Training Miles for this week, the Run Holden Beach half marathon. I really did like the race but I can say i’m ready for someone to turn down the heat and humidity.